By George McHugh
Coeymans Town Supervisor
With nearly 11 inches of rain falling on Coeymans in July, it was the wettest July in recorded history! In spite of the heavy rainfalls, our wastewater operators, Parks Department and highway crew continued to do their job without incident or pause, and provided the quality of life services that Coeymans residents have come to expect. We owe all our town employees a well-earned “Thank you, for a job well done!”
This month’s message will concentrate on the following topics: 2023 road paving, 2024 tentative town budget, town park bathroom projects, and grants/funding.
2023 ROAD PAVING: The Town Highway Department and Callanan Industries are focused on paving the following town roads this season: Greenbush Avenue, Coons Road, Beck Road, Camille Drive, and Rowe Road.
Additionally, our crew, with the assistance of Carver Construction and the Town of New Baltimore Highway Department, have placed over 220 tons of blacktop on the much-needed Jarvis Road North.
This year, through our partnership with Albany County, the Town of Coeymans was able to piggyback on the Albany County paving contract and receive a much lower paving rate, which resulted in more roads being paved for the same amount of money – a direct benefit to residents and taxpayers.
A fiscally conservative town board, and a professionally led and motivated highway department, coupled with great partnerships between the town, county and local industry, is a recipe for success for Coeymans.
2024 TENTATIVE TOWN BUDGET: Although the 2024 tentative town budget is not due to be filed until Sept. 30, let me give you a sneak preview on some of the highlights that you can expect for 2024.
The budget line for Senior Projects of Ravena is increasing to $10,000. Senior Projects provides a valuable service to our community and their mission must be properly funded, which is why I am proposing a 33% increase in town funding for seniors.
There will also be increases in the budget lines for Emergency Services such as police, paramedics and medical technicians. I am proposing increases in the line items for our parks to include Chimney Top Park, for much-needed maintenance and attention. Our youth programs will also be increased so we may continue to provide summer programs to our youth and families in Coeymans.
The 2024 tentative budget will provide for new improvements and better maintenance of our parks, cemeteries, stormwater collection system, wastewater collection system, highways and sidewalks.
However, the best part of the 2024 budget is that even though it proposes increases in much-needed services and vital community programs, we are able to hold the line on taxes because of increased revenues, more taxable assessed value, PILOT payments (Payment in Lieu of Taxes), and smart fiscal budgeting.
JORALEMON PARK BATHROOM PROJECT: With the heavy rains in July, the bathroom project at Joralemon Park was delayed, but construction is now well underway.
The town remains confident that even with the rain and flooding delays we had in July, we can still anticipate substantial completion of the new lavatory facility to be in late September or early October, barring any other unforeseen circumstances.
COEYMANS LANDING PARK BATHROOM PROJECT: In September, the permanent bathroom construction project at the Coeymans Landing Park shall commence.
Substantial completion of the new bathroom facility is scheduled for November. By year’s end, Joralemon Park and Coeymans Landing Park will have fully functional permanent bathroom facilities. Ensuring good public health and safety, and improving the quality of life for all Coeymans residents will always be this town board’s first priority.
GRANTS/FUNDING: Over the last three years, the town of Coeymans has been very fortunate to receive over $2,000,000 in funding from county, state and federal programs. The funds have been spent wisely, as the town board invested heavily in our town parks, environmentally friendly projects such as the stormwater mitigation project at the Coeymans Landing, broadband internet expansion throughout Coeymans Hollow, wastewater collection system studies, and culvert and roadway improvements.
Congressman Paul Tonko recently notified us that he has proposed in the 2024 federal budget that Coeymans receive approximately $1,860,000 next year in federal funds, to be used towards hamlet sewer infrastructure replacement and improvements. Our sewer collection system is over 60 years old and like many communities, Coeymans is in need of replacing and upgrading its system. With these federal funds, the Coeymans Hamlet Sewer District infrastructure will be able to be improved and replaced, so that our infrastructure and collection system might last another 60 years.
New York State Assemblyman Chris Tague recently contacted me to say that he has proposed Coeymans receive $150,000 in state funds, to go towards the costs of designing and constructing a pedestrian sidewalk network along Route 9W. This multi-year project is being coordinated together with the Village Board, with the end goal being the construction of pedestrian sidewalks from the Greene County line north to Crossroads Ford. It is relationships that we have developed with our village, county, state and federal partners that have enabled Coeymans to receive unprecedented funding and opportunity, to get things done.
Coeymans has come a long way in only four short years, but we have much more to accomplish before we can rest. I am humbled, honored and proud to serve as your town supervisor. I want to thank the town board, our Legislator Zach Collins, elected officials at every level, and all our town employees, for working together to get the job done. It takes a team to run a town – and Coeymans has a great team!